The Civic Orchestra of Chicago provides its musicians with unparalleled training opportunities at the highest level. At the heart of its professional training is study of orchestral repertoire with Cliff Colnot, Yo-Yo Ma, coaches from the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, distinguished guest conductors and visiting artist of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
A typical Civic Orchestra season includes 8-10 concerts at Orchestra Hall and other performances, including concerts in community venues, open rehearsals or closed reading sessions with select guest conductors and chamber performances.
The Civic Orchestra’s training emphasizes artistic excellence through mastery of orchestral playing and in-depth study of key composers and repertoire. A typical concert cycle includes a series of split orchestra and full orchestra rehearsals with the principal conductor, sectional(s) with coaches from the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and final rehearsals with the guest conductor. There are also opportunities for musicians to rehearse in self-guided sectionals without the conductor or a coach.
The Civic Orchestra musicians have unique access to members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in a number of ways. In addition to sectionals with designated coaches from the CSO, Civic musicians have opportunities to receive chamber coaching as well as workshops/classes on orchestral experts and mock auditions with CSO musicians.
Civic musicians also have opportunities to observe CSO rehearsals with Music Director Riccardo Muti and other distinguished guest conductors, and receive complimentary or discounted tickets to select CSO concerts and other visiting artists’ performances at Symphony Center.
In addition to intensive training in pursuit of artistic excellence, the Civic Orchestra musicians receive mentoring and training to cultivate their ability to succeed in the rapidly evolving world of music in the 21st century. Under the leadership of Yo-Yo Ma, the Civic Orchestra embraces the values of Citizen Musician and encourages its musicians to utilize their talent and passion for music in ways that will enhance their career and positively contribute to the larger community.
During their time in the Civic Orchestra, Civic musicians have many opportunities to cultivate skills in citizen musicianship through innovative orchestral programming and chamber activities that provide opportunities to develop and experiment with new ideas. They also participate in a wide array of family and education programs of the Institute of Learning, Access and Training at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
Another way in which the Civic Orchestra facilitates citizen musicianship is through MusiCorps®, a music education and advocacy program in which select Civic musicians mentor Chicago Public School students and perform at various community sites. Musicians serve diverse constituencies in order to cultivate their abilities in audience development while promoting music awareness and appreciation.
Learn more at citizenmusican.org.
CIVIC MEMBERSHIP BENEFITS
Participation in the Civic Orchestra as a regular member is a part-time commitment, enabling members to pursue additional educational opportunities and engage in the rich professional musical life of Chicago. Each regular member of the Civic Orchestra will receive an annual stipend of $6,900 in the 2013/14 season to help offset some living expenses. Those who audition successfully for principal string positions will receive an additional $2,180 per season. Civic members selected to participate in MusiCorps activities receive an additional base stipend of $2,100 per season. Both regular and associate members are eligible to apply for MusiCorps.
Regular members are eligible to participate in the Civic Orchestra for up to two consecutive seasons. Musicians accepted as associate members are offered a one-season associate membership and are contacted on as-needed basis as extra/substitute musicians.
Each season all Civic members are offered complimentary tickets to more than 40 CSO concerts and visiting artist concerts at Symphony Center. Civic members also have professional opportunities to engage in a variety of Institute programs that offer incremental stipend, as well as to network with those affiliated with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, including musicians and staff, who have invaluable experience in working for a leading arts organization.